Individuals suffering from severe respiratory problems often face debilitating challenges in their daily lives. These conditions can make it difficult to work and maintain a steady income.
Thankfully, the Social Security Administration recognizes the impact of these conditions on individuals’ ability to work and provides a path for eligible individuals to access Social Security Disability benefits.
Medical criteria for respiratory problems
To qualify for SSD benefits based on respiratory problems, you must meet specific medical criteria. Some common respiratory conditions that may qualify for benefits include:
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease: COPD encompasses chronic bronchitis and emphysema, which result in persistent airflow limitations.
Asthma: Severe and recurrent asthma attacks that require frequent medical intervention may qualify.
Cystic fibrosis: This genetic disorder affects the respiratory and digestive systems, leading to chronic lung infections and breathing difficulties.
Pulmonary fibrosis: Scarring of lung tissue can impair oxygen exchange, making it difficult to breathe.
Chronic respiratory failure: This condition results in a severe reduction in oxygen levels and requires ongoing oxygen therapy.
These conditions must be severe enough to prevent the person from engaging in substantial gainful activity for at least 12 months or will result in death.
Meeting non-medical criteria
In addition to the medical criteria, applicants must meet certain non-medical criteria to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits. Applicants to need have a recent and long enough work history to earn sufficient work credits. The exact number of credits required depends on the age at which the disability began. Applicants must not engage in SGA, which is work that earns more than a specified monthly income threshold set by the SSA.
More than 34 million people live with chronic respiratory diseases. Although applying for Social Security Disability benefits can be a complex process, it provides needed relief for many people.